"Whatever you choose, I promise to be there by your side."

He got up from my bed and walked up behind me. I felt his arms wrap around my body, holding me tightly in a friendly way.

"Tae-chan….I can't. I…don't want to endanger your life."

"Nonsense, Aaliyah. I promised you and myself a long time ago that I will always be there for you. I'm never going to break it..."


"But nothing."

Taesung forcefully turned me around. Both of his hands held onto both of shoulders tightly.

"I will never allow you to get hurt."

My lips curved into a warm smile.

It was no use trying to change his mind. He was more stubborn than I was and that was pretty damn stubborn. When his mind was made up, there was no way you could change it.

"Thanks, Tae-chan."

I embraced him in a tight and loving hug. He was the other guy that has always been there for me when my grandfather couldn't. We have been friends since the beginning of middle school and been inseparable ever since. I didn't really have a lot of friends, mostly because people found me intimidating, but Taesung didn't. He was the first to come up and talk to me and get to know me. I was really happy that time.

I leaned into his chest, making Taesung wrap both of his arms around my back. I was sitting Indian on the floor as Taesung sat with his legs spread apart on each side of me. I need some more comforting and Taesung was right guy to give it to me. Taesung and I are very close. So close that people even thought that we were a couple. We're not a couple. The two of us are a couple of very close friends.

I had just lost my grandfather and now a very huge decision rests on my shoulders. I don't blame my grandfather for this. He did it to protect his family. It's not his fault. He was preparing me for this.

I let out another huge sigh.

"What am I gonna do, Tae-chan?" I asked him, desperately wanting an answer from him.

"I'm sorry Liyah-chan, but only you can answer that."

Chan is an honorific we use at the end of nicknames we made up for each other. It's a casual way of showing how close we are to one another.

I was afraid he was going to say that. He was right. Only I can answer my question.

Taesung rubbed my back up and down in a soothing and friendly way.

"You're right…."

A knock was heard on my door with someone immediately opening the door afterwards. I parted from Taesung and stored up at my doorway to see my younger brother Jaden.

"What do you want?" I asked him in an annoyed tone.

"What are doing cuddling Taesung in your room?" He asked.

I could tell he wanted call mom and snitch on me.

"None of your business. Now tell me what you want or get out." I demanded him in a much harsher voice.

"It's time for dinner."

After that, he slammed my door shut. I let yet another sigh.

"Sorry about him."

Taesung slightly laughed a bit.

"It's no big deal. I know how little sibs can be a pain. Remember? I have a little sister."

"Oh ya! Choi!"

I slowly stood up. I grabbed Tae's hands and pulled him up with me.

"Mind staying and having dinner with me?"

"No, I have to go home or parents would be worrying sick. I promised them that I would only walk you home like I always do. You know how my parents are." He sighed.

"They were nice to me when I visited."

""That's because they like you! They keep telling me embarrassing things every time you leave."

"Like what?" I asked curiously.

Tae avoided my gaze by glancing at my carpet. I could tell his face started blushing a deep red. I cocked my head to the side, confused at the reactions he is giving me.

"They keep telling me to make you my…..girlfriend…." He mumbled the last part, though I heard it loud and clear.

I giggled a bit at his embarrassed face.

"They really want me to be your girlfriend?"

I thought about it.

"Hm, maybe that won't be a bad idea." I winked at him.

That made him even more embarrassed.

"Don't tease me!"

My giggle turned into a full laugh.

"I'm sorry. Please forgive me, but you never know. It might happen someday."

I grabbed his hands again and led him out of my room and down the stairs. He stared at me sadly.

"I wish I could stay longer." He whined.

I gave him a warm smile.

"It's okay. I don't want your parent's worrying about you. "


I hugged him tightly goodbye and waved to him as he walked out my front door. I closed the door and ran straight for the kitchen.

After dinner and when it was time for bed, I dressed into my pajamas and jumped into bed.

That night, my dreams were plagued with nightmares of the ninja from the Tokugawa clan coming back. HE slaughtered my parents, my little brother and Taesung one by one and in front of me. I was forced to watch, not being able to move because I was tied up. My body was covered with bloody bruises. Blood trickled down the side of mouth. Tears filled my eyes as I cried out all of their names. They all lied in puddle of their blood mixed together.

That dream helped me make a decision on what I was going to do.